Hudsonville Creamery & Ice Cream produces, among other things, frozen yoghurt bars, which are extremely popular.
The frozen products had to be packed without any risk of melting.
The packaging line ensures 100 per cent production coverage in the unlikely event of a component failure.
Schubert switched from the previous side-loading box design to a top-loading cut.
The packaging saves material costs for added sustainability.
Since 1895, North American contract manufacturer Hudsonville Creamery & Ice Cream has been successfully producing ice cream bars and stick bars for its own and other brands, which is extremely popular in the USA. To keep up with constantly changing demand, new product developments and formats, Hudsonville needs to be able to act with high-level flexibility and speed. For its end-of-line automation plans, the company followed the recommendation of its long-standing partner IPM – Integrated Packaging Machinery – who had recommended that these ambitious end-of-line automation plans would be most efficiently and best executed with Schubert’s expertise. The new compact, redundantly designed packaging line can be used very flexibly and ensures 100 per cent production coverage without product loss – even in the event of a failure of a machine component
The development, production and flawless delivery of Hudsonville’s diverse range of quality products call for the highest levels of flexibility and equally efficient packaging lines. In the past, even a single machine stop in the packaging process meant a downtime of at least three minutes for the manufacturer in the upstream production processes – resulting in a high product loss. The objective was that the frozen delicacies could be packed fully automatically, seamlessly, with outstanding speed and reliability – first into cartons and then into boxes ready for shipping – without the risk of melting in the event of an unforeseen machine stop. To achieve the required flexibility, redundancy and rapid implementation, Hudsonville turned to the Schubert experts from Crailsheim on the recommendation of its partner, the North American IPM engineering firm and packaging consultant. Only six weeks after the initial discussions, the requested machine layout – consisting of four cartoners connected in series and two lightline cartonpackers – was designed and successfully presented. Schubert also made changes to the packaging material and switched from the previous side-loading to a top-loading design. This saves material costs, provides more space for the careful sorting of sensitive products and results in an overall increase in sustainability throughout the entire packaging and shipping process.
One of the main advantages for the customer is the built in redundancy in the machine layout. Schubert designed a packaging line consisting of four cartoners connected in series, with three being sufficient to process 100 per cent of the incoming products. Should one of the cartoners need to be stopped by the operator, the remaining three can still entirely cover the production with absolute reliability. The line also includes two additional cartonpackers that are part of Schubert’s preconfigurable, modular lightline machine series. To enable the required high flexibility in a small space, Schubert’s Transmodul transport robot is used on every cartoner. Thanks to the exceptional flexibility of the new end-of-line system, Hudsonville also anticipates benefitting from a competitive edge in future production contracts with other brand manufacturers as well as in the expansion of its own brand portfolio.
- No product loss due to a flexible system with redundancy
- Material and cost savings thanks to optimised carton blanks
- Ergonomic, user-friendly handling
The entire packaging line consists of four identical small cartoners and two cartonpackers which are part of Schubert’s preconfigured lightline machine series. The highlight of each cartoner is Schubert’s unique Transmodul transport robot, which guarantees outstanding flexibility in a small space. The cartoners themselves each consist of seven robots. The carton blanks are taken from the magazine by an F3 robot. An F2 robot then erects two boxes of four and places them onto the Transmodul. The frozen yoghurt bars, which are wrapped in flow film, are then picked and placed into the erected cartons before they are sealed by another F2 robot. The cartons are then turned 90 degrees, transferred to a conveyor belt and transported to the lightline cartonpacker, where the cartons are packed into boxes ready for dispatch. The new Schubert line is also exceptionally user-friendly, as all four of the cartoners’ magazines are aligned to one side.
- 450 frozen yoghurt bars per minute
- approx. 113 cartons of 4 or 14 cartons of 8 per minute
- Compact line configuration
- Redundant TLM-Machine-Layout
- Transmodul in use